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Dr. Kimberly Carter: It’s time to start a real conversation about sexual assault.

Me & My OBGOctober 19, 2016Articles

One of my patients was riding her bicycle to school and in broad daylight a man grabbed her off the bike, kidnapped her, and sexually assaulted her.  She was brave and remained clear headed enough to jump out of a moving car to escape, to live, and to eventually see the criminals (oh yes, he had a friend) brought to justice. 

 Start the ConversationThe thought that I couldn’t get past is – Why would ANYONE think that he has the right to grab a woman off the street so that he can assault her?

I work and live in Austin, Texas home of multiple universities and colleges.  Universities and colleges where a national survey reports that 1 out of 4 college women are assaulted during their time at school.

For the sake of our sons, our daughters, our grandparents (sexual assault has no age limits) we need to begin an open and honest conversation about respect for girls and women, about how to give or get consent and the NEED to get consent, about how it’s not ok to add a rophie to a drink to make a party more fun.  We need to talk, to act out and demand that we figure how to curb sexual violence in all it’s forms.  We need to demand that all rape kits be processed and that celebrities and men in power not just learn but feel the heavy hand of a prosecutor if they do something as illegal as grabbing someone’s genitals. We need to address sexual assault in all it’s forms – in the area of domestic violence, in economic coercion,  in the name of having more fun at a college party.  Let the conversation begin.

Fisher BS, Cullen FT, Turner MG. The sexual victimization of college women. Department of Justice 2000. www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/182369.pdf (Accessed on January 29, 2010).

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